Essay on Judaism, Religion, And Religion

1021 Words Sep 27th, 2016 5 Pages
When Judaism emerges it sends shockwaves around the ancient world because Judaism in a monotheistic religion in a polytheistic world. This immediately sets Judaism apart in the unique sense that there is only one God. The significance of Judaism does not lie in its number of followers, rather, Judaism is incredibly important because of how it shaped the world and how Christianity and Islam (two of the largest religions in the modern world) can trace their roots to Judaism. This is not, however, to insinuate that Judaism, or religion in general, is static. The Jewish religion is intricate and is constantly changing not only in the fabric of the belief system, but also in the very idea of what it is to be a Jew. These constantly changing components of Judaism are what make a religion so rich and meaningful because the changes in belief systems parallel those found in the world.

Jews in the ancient world have this awful dynamic of being free and independent and then being in bondage and back again. Around 538 B.C.E, the Jews are faced with the Babylonians exiling them from the land that was promised to them by God (lecture; The Historical Development of Judaism). This causes this feeling of uncertainty of fate to arise in the Jewish people. Many begin to wonder if God has abandoned them. Though, in 538 B.C.E, the Persian ruler Cyrus the Great, who has since conquered the Babylonians, permits the Jews to return to their homeland (lecture; God and Man). Many do return but some…

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